Isola del Giglio: grilled calamari for lunch


Hot sunny mornings on the beach, with sounds of sea, happy kids and the fish truck arriving every morning, with “Pesce fresco!” being shouted through the slightly tinny loudspeakers. They did not have moscardini, so we did not try making those, but they did have some lovely fresh calamari. So one day we bought some for lunch.


I had initially thought of doing Chargrilled squid and courgette from Chica Andaluza. But it was hot, and we opted for just serving the calamari sliced across in strips ( they curled up ) on a crisp green salad with garlic, salt, pepper and lemon boats. Fresh focaccia on the side.


First, however, we had to clean them. There is a first time for everything! I knew the theory: pull out the innards and the plastic-looking bit, but actually doing it was interesting. I slit them lengthwise and then cleaned them, just to sure it was all out.


The fishmonger kindly provided parsley and peperoncino.


Grilled calamari on green salad (to serve eight as a light main course)

Fifteen-twenty squid, cleaned but left whole (1.5 kilos)
1 small chili, finely chopped
2 cloves of finely sliced garlic
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
Plain green salad
Generous handful of chopped parsley
Lemons, cut in boats

Clean the squid, and cut them lengthwise in two. Arrange the salad on a large platter, with chopped parsley, minced peperoncino and chopped garlic sprinkled over. Cook on the barbecue (or on a very hot griddle pan) until slightly charred. Cut the grilled calamari across into bite sized strips (careful, it will be hot and the strips will curl up) and serve it on on top of the salad, with some salt sprinkled over. Squeeze lemon juice over, right before serving. Some fresh focaccia with rosemary on the side is very nice.

Notes: marinating the calamari with olive oil, peperoncino and garlic would have been even nicer, but as people arrived hungry from the beach, we fast-tracked the calamari. And forgot to take a picture of the final platter. I used smoked salt on half the calamari, that was excellent.

grilling calamari

Then, back to the beach for an afternoon swim…..

sunset Campese

Update: it turns out that someone else took a picture.



2 thoughts on “Isola del Giglio: grilled calamari for lunch

  1. Rowena

    Perfect summer dining, and I will have to do the calamari and zukes after checking on the link! I entirely forgot about Giglio after what happened, but did they remove the ship already? How were the crowds this summer?

    1. krumkaker Post author

      Thanks! In this heat something quick and easy in the kitchen is all I can face. No, the boat is still there, there is a massive salvage operation: see There were far fewer wreck-viewing daytrippers this summer, and tourism was definitely down. Pity, it’s such a lovely island. The locals we spoke to said they thought the drop in visitors this year was also linked to the general financial situation in Italy. It is tough for many.


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